Stories from the 1981 Tennessee State Fair
By Spalding Gray


PT - 6



September 20.   I got up the courage to do my yoga outside. I took my sleeping bag out, came out in my long underwear, and began my yoga. Randy got out of the truck and said. "WHAT THE F@(# ARE YOG DOING?" And I said, "Randy, I notice you never brush your teeth, how come?" He said, "You don't have to brush your teeth, I never brush my teeth." I said, "Not even as a kid?" And he said, "No, my father was a doctor and he told me not to brush my teeth. It doesn't do anything. I floss once in awhile." So I figured maybe that's why all the carnies weren't brushing their teeth.

Finally I couldn't hold back any more. I had my morning coffee, and I went into the first toilet booth and sat down. There was a glory hole there, but it was clogged with toilet paper. And above the glory hole was a progression of some of the best drawings I've ever seen in a toilet booth of an uncircumcised penis growing through different stages into a full erection. It must have been done by a carnival artist, because it was very well drawn. The only graffiti in the whole toilet booth read:
If God did not want man to eat pussy, he would not have made it look so much like a taco.

This was signed "J. D. Skydiver."

I went back and had coffee and I saw Priscilla and Emmett” "Hi Priscilla, Hi Emmett" - over by their trailer just like a suburban couple. Priscilla was spraying the driveway to keep the dust down and hanging up a patchwork quilt, because they knew Randy was around and they didn't want any surreptitious photographs. When I thought about the street freaks of New York City, I didn't think Priscilla and Emmett looked so bad. I wanted to interview them, but Randy said, "No, no wait. I'm going to ask if I can take their photograph." I decided to walk the midway alone to check it out and see if there was anything interesting. I walked along, and I heard what sounded like a England minister's voice coming over the speaker of this sideshow:  If we can stop one child from taking drugs, then our world-wide campaign will not be in vain.


He was as normal as you and I . . . .was what stopped me, actually.


….He was as normal as you and I. This is B. J. Reed. A shocking example of the horrors of drug abuse.  Please, please, do not be shocked by what you see.


I stopped.  There was a big trailer that had an original paint job.  It wasn’t like the airbrush paint jobs every other show had.  It was a well-done, hand-painted combination of cannabis, different pills, a man in a wheelchair, and in place of his right leg, a big hypodermic needle, all surrounded by flashing light bulbs to attract attention.


Down at the corner it read:  If we can stop one child from taking drugs, then our world-wide campaign will not be  in vain.


To be Continued


Special Thank to Kathleen Russo, the Estate of Spalding Gray and official website of Spalding Gray

All stories are re-printed with the permission of the Estate of Spalding Gray

All stories are copyrighted © Spalding Gray & Spalding Gray Estate and posted here with their expressed permission,


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